tv MSNBC Live With Velshi and Ruhle MSNBC June 20, 2017 8:00am-9:01am PDT
>> i cannot possibly imagine the president terminating bob mueller. it's note even -- it's redid lois house to talk about. >> as a former attorney, that michael flynn is already cooperating with the fbi. >> many of these republicans realize what the president has done and what he said and things that have transpired are really troublesome. >> the state department says it is holding north korea accountable for warmbier's death. >> not just the brutality of one individual but putting the united states at risk with nuclear weapons and all of this is coming to head at the same time and president trump has no way to run from this. >> at least we got him home to be with his parents where they were so happy to see him even though he was in very tough condition. it's a brutal regime. and we'll be able to handle it. >> once the president has sort of been touched by a tragedy like this, an example of the
heinousness of the regime, he focuses in on it. >> it's the most expensive house race in history. >> 140,000 people already voted early, unheard of for an offyear congressional race. >> if you look back and things are that tight, wouldn't you just say get an apartment in the district. >> i'm a couple miles south of the line. not a major issue in the race. >> i feel great today. >> that's karen handel walking in to vote right now. >> it would be a symbolic victory for democrat s if they can pick off a congressional district in georgia. >> republicans have been working behind closed doors, exactly what they accuse democrats of doing when they crafted obamacare, now democrats are ready to declare war. >> no one on the democratic side knows anything about the substance of the bill. >> why do it in secret? >> there is going to be a full discussion and there is going to be a score available to the american people before we ask the final version to be voted on. >> all senators meeting, all republican senators meeting
tomorrow to talk about it more deeply. >> so much at stake. much more on those stories ahead plus right now at the white house, ukrainian president poroshenko is set to stop in at the oval office. hr mcmaster and vice president mike pence will also be in the room but the white house is saying very little about the encounter happening at the height -- the absolute height of tensions with russia. what this mysterious meeting means for u.s. relations with russia. we'll dig into that. >> when you said the height of tension, we have a russian fighter jet armed with missiles buzzing a u.s. reconnaissance plane reportedly coming within 5 feet. reportedly happened over the baltic sea yesterday. that after the u.s. shot down a syrian plane on sunday which kept bombing forces in syria.
shut down a military hot line shed up specifically to prevent the u.s. and russia from firing on one another in syria. extraordinary, at one more element, if that's not enough, add one more element to the mix, ukraine's president making a mysterious advice i will visit house amid the tension there. a ali, think about all of this. >> world war i. >> you're too young too. >> triggered because the ferd nant was shot in an obscure corner. and i think from my reading of it it's not important because world war i was going to start on some corner somewhere because it was such a hot spot. i look at syria and u.s. and russia and iran and syrians and everybody else involved. i think to myself, these hot lines and planes buzzing each other can have much more serious impact.
>> it is so complicated and so heated. at this point the question is when will there be a straw that breaks the camel's back. let's bring in our pentagon correspondent hans nichols joins us live along with military analyst kevin baron and executive editor of defense one. hans, let's start with you. walk us through this meeting that's taking place today in the white house. >> reporter: poroshenko is the president of ukraine, he's from the opposite party from the party with which paul manafort, the former campaign chairman for the trump campaign was associated with. there's not necessarily a link because his party and old party were bitter rivals. hr mcmaster will stop by as well and president will drop in. just a little bit on the sort of style of this, whenever it's not an official state visit and they actually have the vice president to president meeting, sometimes the president will drop by and
they'll have substantive conversations but they don't want to view it with a full on presidential to presidential or even next level of a state visit. this will be a good opportunity to take the temperature for president trump on what's happening in ukraine. remember, later next month or end of august, you're going to have a lot of russian training operations that are going to be taking place in the east. a lot of america's nato allies, ukraine not a member of nato, will be concerned about that. really this is a chance for the president to take the temperature on what's happening on the ground in the ukraine. >> poroshenko is not somebody vladimir putin links so maybe donald trump doesn't want to shine a lot of light on this. let's talk about the russian jet buzzes an american plane. am i right in my concern that things are getting a little hot around there and this idea of russians and americans flying their jets close to each other, not in a military exercise can be very dangerous? >> well, yes, so it depends
where though. the russians have been doing a lot of near misses and fly byes in the north of europe -- >> around the arctic as well. >> not just american jets but nato and others in the region. i think the prommism iproximity waiting for information out of european command, it's all concerning absolutely. also a fly by of rc-135, premiere intelligence plane that does a lot of round the clock monitoring. to target that plane is a specific pushback for a specific function and it absolutely is alarming. >> you were mentioning the arctic. norway, a nato country is the only country to have moved its entire air force, its entire military operations north of the arctic circle and they are nato's forward operating operation in the arctic and they are constantly flying out there
because russians are flying their planes up there. there's no interaction between them but there's a lot of nato and russian planes flying near each other up there as well. >> near and 5 feet are two different things. >> very different things. >> they are having an effect. i spoke with the swedish defense minister was in town a couple of weeks ago and i met with him. he made a point to say as a lot of other -- lithuanian ministers, all increasing defense spending and all looking at specific abilities that are responses to russia's threats. right now the paris air show going on, our defense one reporter is out there. the european countries are asking for more f-16s because they are specifically to counter the potential russian threat on the border. >> hans nichols, what are u.s. officials saying about this buzz by. >> the operative word to look for is unsafe and sometimes unprofessional. so, intercepts are quite common. they intercept other planes
close to their border in international water. sometimes you can get into a semantic whether it's an intercept or encounter. intercept means that the incoming plane was turned around. they are calling this unsafe. in the past, you had very close encounters but nothing really in the 5 feet range. the most recent one i can remember late april, there's one that came within 25 feet. there's a russian plane, su-27 again, it was the same secret reconnaissance plane that kevin is talking about. and the russian plane did a barrel roll over the 135. so it's an indication that you have aggressive post tour from the russians and you overlay all of this to the quasino fly zone that russia has declared west of the u freighties. it doesn't look like the u.s. is concerned about this in part because they shot down a drone well west, presenting some danger to u.s. allied forces
there. at least we know one sense that there's a u.s. aircraft that likely was not abiding by what russia says what they are calling a no fly zone, saying any u.s. planes will be targets. >> let's turn to north korea now. what would president trump do now in the wake of the death, very sad death of otto warmbier who died late yesterday after a year and a half in u.s. president. the state department holds north korea accountable for warmbier's death and demanding the release of the three other americans who are still detained there. >> tomorrow secretary of state rex tillerson and defense secretary jim mattis are xpeked to hold talks with chinese officials about north korea. hans nichols and kevin, we have to dig into this. we've heard from people who the state department who have said, the obama administration had been working to try to get otto home. clearly he came home in the last week but he came home basically
to be laid to rest with his -- with his family. what kind of response do we think we could get out of the white house we saw when president trump saw what happened in syria, when he saw a chemical attack on children. >> he bombed the syrian air base. >> it struck him and he bombed the syrian air base. >> what kind of response do you think we can get there? >> hans? >> two things we should note about the syrian analogy, one is the speed, the velocity in which the response came from the white house, less than 72 hours later. that said less than 24 hours here at the white house as well as officials were talking to the pentagon and state, there's no indication that the president's north korea strategy has exchanged. that is a china based strategy, outsourcing to the chinese and have the chinese really pressure the north koreans. that's the strategy. i suspect that's what we'll get tomorrow when we have secretary mattis and tillerson meeting with their chinese counterpart,
not the defense department or pentagon, but at this side of the river at the state department. >> last month president trump said he would be honored -- use the word honored to meet with kim jong-un. >> smart cookie. i look at the list of people who say there are options and more sanctions and this and that, there are no other options, either the united states gets militarily involved, which is something the people will not want because of the number of u.s. troops and allies in the region or lean on china as hans says. >> it's not just bomb or do nothing. with north korea there's more intelligence to be done, cyber war fare to sabotage the development of missiles. i would strongly urge comparison between what happened in syria and what could happen in north korea -- >> why? >> completely different theaters and foreign policy problems, even being handled by the same white house. administration officials and military officials have made a point to tell reporters even don't try to make these
comparisons because something happened here it's a signal to the other side. if they are going to send a signal, you'll know it. in syria you had a chemical attack in the middle of a two-year civil war inside the assad regime where we have forces happening and that would be different than first strike ever since the korean war by americans on north korean soil. i do think the white house is serious. i would take them at their word that they are more prepared than any other american president since the '60s to launch military action on north korea. but specifically to their advancement of nuclear warhead on an icbm missile, this case is a diplomatic case and not related to that. but it does fall like you said right on the beginning of this incredible summit that's about to happen that we heard about a week ago, just a week ago we were told that the president and xi back at mar-a-lago decided to get together with the secretaries of state and defense
tomorrow. so we'll see what comes out of that but that's what taints that picture, like with this ukrainian meeting today, russian fly-bys and provocative putin statements and meeting with oliver stone. you know who's not doing all of that? the ukrainians. you have a couple of big foreign policy moments for this white house and this administration and we'll see who is in charge and who has the most influence from tillerson and trump and what the outcome will be. >> thank you. we all should remember when xi jinping was at mar-a-lago they said they were going to do a 100-day review on trade so that would really fall into -- commerce. wilbur ross. as we're approaching that 100 days because it was early april when it happened, people say things are open now between the u.s. and china, exactly where the 100 day mark is coming up. >> that's interesting leverage that the president could use to say to china, you have to get on the north korea situation.
coming up next, senate republicans are fast tracking the latest health care bill. they are in fact planning a vote next week which would be interesting except nobody has seen a bill yet. >> not even close. they are talking down to cbo score. remember, tom price put the head of the cbo in that job. there's nothing more important to me than my vacation. so when i need to book a hotel room, i want someone that makes it easy to find what i want. booking.com gets it. and with their price match, i know i'm getting the best price every time. now i can start relaxing even before the vacation begins. your summer vacation is very important. that's why booking.com has great offers up to 40% off now through july 4th. find great deals now at booking.com. booking.yeah! that goes beyond assuming beingredients are safe...ood to knowing they are. going beyond expectations... because our pets deserve it. beyond. natural pet food.
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moments ago on the senate floor chuck schumer loves the drama, highlighting president trump's comments on the gop health care bill when he called it mean. senate republicans say they could have a outline of their health care proposal as early as tomorrow and they want to vote for this thing before the july 4 recess but republicans have only been working behind closed doors. doing exactly what they accuse democrats of when they crafted obamacare. which prompted democrats to take to the senate floor last night for a marathon protest that lasted part midnight. >> the republicans are writing their het care bill under the cover of darkness because they are ashamed of it. >> i say to the republican leadership, what are you afraid of? bring that bill out. >> why are my constituents not allowed to see the details of what's about to happen to their lives? >> there's only one word for what the senate republicans are doing with this bill.
shameful. it is shameful. >> now let's get past the show. on tax reform specifically, house speaker paul ryan is promising to overhaul the tax code by the end of the year despite political divisions among republicans on this specific issue. the speaker is scheduled to deliver that speech on tax reform at 12:45 today to the national association of manufacturers. in excerptsry leased by his office, ryan will warn about accepting half measures and path formed without obstacles and political challenges. what's going to be interesting is how the gop is handling it all. they fast tracked this bill. they could have it as early as the end of this week, next week. think about this. in 2010, every republican across the board said the way obamacare was handled and democrats did this behind closed doors, hurt the american people. it's amazing they are trying to do the exact same thing, ali. >> they tweeted about it -- by
the way, they are never wrong. big legislation should be out there for review by journalists and experts, by the american people. i don't understand why we think this is a good way to govern. >> back in 2010, mike pence himself said this is life or death. we need the american people to see this. what's interesting while democrats are pushing back against this, president trump likes to make the argument they are the ones blocking it. obamacare is failing, they are we hafling like obstructionists. what if democrats say, fine, this is on you? they can't play games because this is life or death. it's going to affect 100% of the american people. >> it's one sixth of the u.s. economy and neither party should necessarily let the other one own it. we need to fix this and we're not seeing that happen yet. >> whether or not you like the cbo score, it's the measure we have -- it's the tool we have been using over and over and again, it's a nonpartisan -- >> i would be tlihrilled if we
knew a more of couraccurate way discussing this. right now we use cbo scores. >> guess what's else is open? >> polls, we'll break down how this particular high stakes race could have an impact on elections across the country when we come back on the other side. will you be ready when the moment turns romantic? cialis for daily use treats ed and the urinary symptoms of bph. tell your doctor about your medicines, and ask if your heart is healthy enough for sex. do not take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain, or adempas® for pulmonary hypertension, as this may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. do not drink alcohol in excess. to avoid long-term injury, get medical help right away for an erection lasting more than four hours. if you have a sudden decrease or loss of hearing or vision, or an allergic reaction, stop taking cialis and get medical help right away.
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and do your thing. happening now at the white house, president trump is meeting with the president of ukraine. let's listen in. >> thank you very much. it's a great honor to be with president poroshenko of the ukraine, a place we've all been very much involved in and you're been seeing it and everybody has been reading about it. and we've had very, very good discussions. it's going to continue throughout the day and i think a lot of progress has been made. it's a great honor to have you, mr. president, thank you. thank you very much. would you like to say something?
>> great pleasure to be together with you. supportive partner, strategic partner. we really -- for freedom and democracy with the great support and security defense, support of my 45 million nation, the biggest in the european country and absolutely confident that today is a story of success aej and i'm proud to have you mr. president and united states for this story of success. we're very much admire your very active steps because today we will -- when we launch the
first -- aour practice -- [ inaudible ] >> thank you. >> mr. president, how do you respond to the death of otto wa warmbooer? >> otto is a disgrace what happened to otto. and it should never ever be allowed to happen and frankly, if he were brought home sooner i think the result would have been a lot different. he should have been brought home that same day the result would have been different. whad to otto is a disgrace and i spoke to his family. his family is incredible, what they've gone through. but he should have been brought home a long time ago.
thank you all very much. >> that was pretty incredible, a moment in which president obama -- >> president trump. >> president trump i'm sorry, a total gis grace what happened to otto warmbrooer and blamed president o bamt ma, wouldn't have happened if he were brought home the same day. there are three other americans being held in north korea, if bringing home was that that easy, why didn't you bring them back? what an opportunity for greatness that president trump missed there. steve, was that not stunning? if you think about this otto warmbier came home in the last four days and his parents got to see him and had to bury him. extraordinary that the president would immediately make this political. >> yeah at the same time i guess
that is something we've been seeing and hearing from him all along. he does have a habit here -- striking, there are sort of the unwritten rule in politics before the trump era, you wait a while, sometimes it's a year, sometimes a give or take for a president or an elected official to start blaming the predecessor. donald trump didn't wait a year. he got right into it. >> did president trump actually achieve something that obama didn't? at the end of the day -- >> quite possibly, yeah. >> an argument could be made that the north koreans sent otto home how sick he was because they didn't want him to die on their soil. >> and we don't know yet what the truth is about what happened. we know dennis rodman went there and white house says he had nothing to do with it. but it is remarkable the speed with which donald trump did -- >> otto warmbier's father did make a statement before otto's passing thanking the president for bringing him home and his father noted that the past administration didn't. >> the other thing that the president said at the top of the that, about ukraine, never truer
words have been spoken. in keeping it very general with petro poroshenko, you'rve been seeing it and everyone has been hearing about it. poroshenko is not the guy who vladimir putin wants to be the president of ukraine. so little bit of an awkward meeting. >> something else that everybody is talking about though. >> you saw steve kornacki is here, let's talk about the special election under way right now in georgia, the 6th district, being called a referendum on president trump that could have huge implications for republicans and democrats next year. here's a live look at roswell georgia, gop strong hold since 1970. by far the most expensive house race in history, $40 million has been spent on tv ads alone. when all is said and done, the total could top $50 million. >> which means people will be
happy tomorrow to have their regular tv programming back as well as their phones stop ringing, 140,000 people already voted early which is unheard of it for an house race. ossoff and handel are neck in neck. guess what president trump did? he took to twitter, trump went after ossoff writing, he wants to raise your taxes to the highest level and weak on crime and security and doesn't even live in the district. then praising handel, he wrote, she will fight for lower taxes and gratd health care, strong security and hard worker who will never give up. vote today. both candidates weighed in a short time ago why this election was so important. notable, the two of them don't like to mention president trump often. >> i think the concerns regarding the competence and integrity of this administration have only grown over time and it
speaks to the need for a greater focus on accountability, effective congressional oversight. >> this has been a long time gop strong hold. what does it say that the race is so tight at this point? >> this is a special election and you have been covering elections long enough to know that special elections are called special for a reason. this is a jump ball. >> it's a jump ball. steve kornacki, you have a president with a 38% approval rating and karen handel distanced herself from the president and john ossoff has 50 million bucks behind him. but he only went from having 48.1% to 48.8. stakes are high. >> i think there's two big picture things going on here. number one, something about the district. we talked in the presidential campaign about a certain type of voter that donald trump was losing, the republican traditionally, college educated white voters, suburbanits, professional class. this district is chock full of
them and trump did 20 points worse than mitt romney did -- >> but he won. >> the other thing that's involved here and you mentioned it, the approval rating. that's why both parties nationally are looking so closely at this race. i can show you, it gets to the bigger question of the relationship between a president's job approval and how the president's party tends to do in elections like this, midterm elections, keep this number in mine, 38% in gallup. what is the number like that normally mean? we can show you two possibilities, some presidents at their midterms these were popular presidents, a george w. bush, 1sitting at 63% and bill clinton, the republicans were trying to impeach him and rallying around clinton, 66% in the he '98 midterm and berlin wall was coming down and he was sitting at 58%. not carnage.
bush, the republicans they gained seats in '02. historically amazing, bill clinton, they gained seats in 1998 and it wasn't a blood bath for republicans under bush under 1990. that's a good approval rating -- trump is in this category right now. he's at 38%. look what numbers around that have meant historically. a couple of years ago democrats, they had high hopes going into 2014, especially on senate side. lost more than a dozen seats in the house, bush '06, this put democrats in control of congress in 2006. this was the republican revolution they called it. bill clinton's approval rating was 46%, republicans gained 54 house seats and ended 40 years of democratic control of the house in 1994 and of course 1982. ragen's first midterm did not go well for his party. that's where donald trump's numbers fit right now, 38%. i thought we had one draw mattic final screen there but, when you start to look at a race like
this today, if the democrats ko come out of georgia 6 with a vk tri, not only are they bucking the history of the district but aligning themselves with the history we're showing there. history says a president with that kind of approval rating, his party loses a race like this tonight. >> if this is -- let's talk about what this means, for an ossoff win, a win for the trump resistance and warning shot -- shot across the bow for senate republicans right now who are negotiating this health care bill, which karen handel says people in the district don't care about. and it is then momentum heading into the midterms. on the other side of things, if it's a karen handel win, this helps republicans and seems to be a signal that health care reform -- that people want the healthcare reform that done add trump and the republicans are providing but hit to democrats. >> a huge hit. if ossoff doesn't win this after the 50 million bucks he's got, president trump with whether
it's a 36 or 38% approval rating, with the russia investigation, all of the negative energy being pointed towards him, won't democrats being in a really tough spot? >> and that's the funny thing about this. this is a district for more than a generation now. it's been a republican district. there's more pressure on the democrats tonight because of everything you just said, because of that history and how rocky the trump presidency has been so far and nature of this district demographically, this is the perfect storm for democrats to capture a district like this. psychologically, if the republicans win tonight, the most significant thing it does for midterms tells republicans out there -- maybe it's a republican incumbent, can i survive if it's a bad midterm for trump, maybe a republican candidate, tells them maybe i can win and maybe i can survive in a climate like this. that's the most important thing -- >> two interesting things, karen ha handel says obamacare is not a
topic of conversation and john os sf the fact he doesn't live in the district is not a topic for conversation. >> tomorrow a big topic of conversation is going to be who is telling us this race didn't matter? we know one side will. >> another topic of conversation, there's another special election under way right now, whole lot of people may not know it, getting less attention than georgia 6. south carolina's 5th district, archie parnell against state congressman ralph norman for mulvaney's seat, the now budget director. they say this race is important because it can give insight into the democrats chances of taking back the house next year. the republican is expected to win, this isn't a toss-up. tell us how sour the national environment is for republicans including to 538 polk shows norman up. >> amazing to have you here. >> ivanka's must push for paid
parental leave. she's set to meelt with senators in a few minute on the hill nch the dow and s&p 500 closed at record highs yesterday. we'll talk a little bis when we get back. >> watching severe weather in the gulf. we just received a new update, tropical storm warnings have been extended from louisiana to include the upper texas coast. the system could develop into a tropical storm today and would be named cindy. forecasters say it could hit the coast thursday with rainfall being the biggest threat. >> right now record breaking heat is grounding flights out of the west. 40 flights canceled in arizona where temperatures could hit 120 degrees today but it's a dry heat. >> that's a whole other level. >> it's an issue and we'll talk about this when we get back. i get to do my pilot geeky stuff. extreme heat at high altitude places means that some planes ask n cannot get the lift needed. a regional commercial jet grounded in phoenix, the limit is 118 degrees fahrenheit.
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we've been in record territory as of last night much the dow set a new closing record but we're seeing a little bit of a pullback. i never call that a pullback, 0.07%. >> the market has somewhat distanced itself from political rhetoric but paul ryan is going to be speaking about tax reform today. he has already said he believes we're going to get major tax overhaul by the end of this year and steve min u chin thinks we'll be in get state. >> the market is separate from the economy when you read heads lines about automakers laying people off and retail is starting to have a slide. many of those people are not in the market. those who have assets and those are participants in the stock market, they have gotten the benefit of this rise but those who aren't are still saying man, my wages. >> for those investing, remember ever time we see a sell-off, last week in the nasdaq, 2 or
3%, all people do is use it as aan excuse to buy stocks on sale. the president's daughter and adviser on capitol hill meeting with marco rubio and others to discuss paid leave and family issues, this follows the proposal to provide six weeks of mandatory paid leave for mothers and fathers. america is only one of the developed countries in the entire world to not provide some paid leave for fathers or mothers to take care of your newborn children. >> this was something raised during the last administration and ivanka has been talking about this since the campaign trail. this is a passion for her. the question is, while she's meeting with marco rubio and deb fisher, can she get it over the line? it's a passion for her. when you pair it against so many other things within the trump agenda -- it doesn't align. >> they want to take off regulations and things that cost businesses money, paid leave
will cost money. >> certainly cost people money. we'll see how hard the president will try to push this and back it. it is something that matters so much to his daughter, a special adviser to the president. >> coming up next we'll speak with ron widen and ask him whether he's had a look at the gop health care bill. thank you so much. thank you! so we're a go? yes! we got a yes! what does that mean for purchasing? purchase. let's do this. got it. book the flights! hai! si! si! ya! ya! ya! what does that mean for us? we can get stuff. what's it mean for shipping?
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care. we talked earlier about democrats taking to the senate floor last night to protest senate republicans crafting their bill in secret. that's exactly what republicans accused democrats of doing when they crafted obamacare, although i remind people, there was over a year of consultation on obamacare. >> back then governor mike pence tweeted it is simply wrong for legislation that will affect 100% of the american people to be negotiated behind closed doors. the current senate whip john cornyn tweeted people have a right to know what's happening behind closed door with secret hc negotiations. >> so it is a little bit weird. they are talking about having a bill written by the end of this week, having it scored early next week and maybe voting on it before the july 4th holiday. it almost seems like they want a bill that's not going to pass or want to be able to put it behind them quickly and move on. >> itextraordinary.
president trump was so thrilled when they got it through the house and beer party in the rose gua garden and since called it mean and chuck schumer a mean sign. lives are at stake. we'll talk about a decisionmaker in this, senatorron widen, he's a member of the senate intelligence budget and finance committees and the joint committee on taxation. senator, walk us through where you are in terms of health care. last night was important. your message certainly got out there. but what can you really do? >> first of all, i want to give people an update with the latest news. what we learned this morning is that senate republicans will meet in secret probably tomorrow to discuss the legislation. and i just don't see what the reason is for not bringing the american people into the
discussion right then. there is no reason to keep them in the dark about a bill that is going to cause so much harm to so many americans. >> so, senator, at some point a bill has to show up. it has to get scored by this cbo and then you have to vote -- >> you're being logical. i'm sure that what they're talking about would perhaps be done at the last possible moment because they know that if this bill goes through the traditional process of making sure that people can actually see a text, that it is online for the american people to comment on, they know that americans are going to speak out, very, very loudly, that they don't believe in what this bill does. the idea that you would have an age tax, that people between 55 and 65, premed care, would pay five times as much as young
people. means their premiums would just go into the stratosphere. the reason that the senate republicans are using this approach is because they know it can't stand scrutiny in the light of day. >> what are they telling you in the hallway? last week was sort of this extraordinary moment, a call for unity and bipartisanship and we heard from so many member -- so many lawmakers who said we have to find a way to work together. here you are, less than a week later, the conversations are being had in secret. what are republicans saying to you as you pass them in the hall? >> they're not saying a whole lot. and the reality is they know that this debate is so different than the debate about the affordable care act. i'm the ranking democrat on the senate finance committee. we're in charge of oversight, over hundreds of billions of dollars for medicare and medicaid and tax credits, with
respect to the affordable care act, in our committee, the finance committee, more than 20 republican amendments were accepted in that particular debate. there aren't going to be any democratic amendments this time. and the republicans know this. the moderates, for example, in the senate republican caucus say that they care about medicaid. well, i've worked with them on a bipartisan basis on health care in the past. i sure hope they haven't changed their minds. >> let me ask you about the tweets we were just reading. we saw one -- from 2010, from mike pence, tom price tweeted at the time, your colleague, cornyn from texas tweeted at the time, all saying you can't do this behind closed doors. what were they accusing democrats of doing, why were they accusing democrats of having this discussion about the affordable care act behind closed doors? >> obviously they were trying to score points back in 2009
because they know, for example, they didn't have much of a case on the merits. i mean, the big thing that was done in 2009 and 10 with the affordable care act is we made sure that american health care would never again be for the healthy and wealthy. we provided airtight loophole free protection so that people who had a pre-existing condition could not be discriminated against. so back in 2009-2010, the republicans didn't have much of a case so they tried to say democrats were doing everything in secret. the record shows something else. we spent scores and scores of hours and walked through sessions, we had none of that this time. >> if republicans let you in the room, more than going through what their plan is and how it doesn't work, do you have a game plan? do you have suggestions away to take obamacare and improve it? >> we said from the very
beginning that if they would move away from this partisan, our way or the highway approach, we have a number of suggestions to work in a bipartisan way. i have a long history of doing that. the first thing we do is take steps to improve the exchanges, to stabilize the private insurance market. the second thing we would do is focus on prescription drug costs, i've been particularly concerned about the middle men, the pharmaceutical benefit managers. we don't know what they're putting in their pocket, what they're putting in the consumers pocket. and then the reality is, and medicare is very different today. we have got to update the medicare guarantee and address chronic illness, diabetes, heart disease, strokes. that's where 90% of the medicare dollar is going. we focus on those three areas. >> you're talking to two people who like talking about pharmacy benefit managers. we have been studying that. thank you for bringing that up.
>> we want to talk also, as you mentioned earlier, you're on the intel committee, a theory, but based on what he sees mike flynn doing as it relates to the russia investigation, he seems to think that mike flynn's silence is because he may have flipped and be working with the fbi. is there any truth to that? >> i can't -- i can't comment on deliberations that go on inside the intelligence committee. we have an update there, just for this morning. i lifted my hold a little bit ago on a key appointment that we need to ensure that we can have an expedited effort to follow the money. so much of our intel investigation relates to following up on the press reports, yours and others, about connections between the russians and various people in the trump orbit that deal with money. there say little bit of an update in the last hour on that too. >> also, just before we go, there was some confusion, devin
nunez, has he or has he not recused himself? there is a report of a radio interview where he said he recused himself, it was just noise from the press. >> i certainly have followed this, this deals with the other part of the congress, the house, rather than the senate. i think based on the press reports it sounds like mr. nunes wants to have it both i wways, recusing himself and finding a way to stay involved. i have enormous respect and know him very well as congressman shift, the ranking democrat there, you can get the latest update from him. >> i guess it is fair to say, our observations are more is getting done on the senate intel side than the house intel side, or you seem to be working in a more bipartisan fashion on the senate intel committee than the house is. >> i think we always strive to work in a bipartisan way, just
had another session with senator warner, the vice chair. look, we have spirited differences of opinion. there is no differences of opinion. there is no secret about that. but we understand that we have an incredibly important job. different than bob mueller's. bob mueller is focusing on the criminal side. it is our job to explain to the american people how our democracy was hacked and do it in a way that protects sources and methods and that means we got to try to find some common ground. >> are your republican colleagues doing that with you? >> we certainly made some headway here recently when the agreement between chairman burr and senator warner was put together, i insisted on open hearings, subpoena power, the ability to declassify. we got a ways to go, but i think we made some progress. >> senator, good to talk to you. thank you for being with us. >> thank you for having me. >> senator ron wyden, democrat from oregon, on the intel, the finance and budget committees. and it is interesting hearing senator wyden talk about the
cooperation on the senate intel committee, but not getting it on health care. >> without a doubt. all right. extraordinary. if you think about the day that we're having, what we have ahead of us, whether we're talking about the russian fighter jet, whether we're talking about the race in georgia or health care. >> or north korea. >> so much at stake right now. >> it is a big day. we have been watching very carefully the idea that there was a -- what looked to be a scramble between a russian jet and u.s. jet over the baltics. this will be an issue we're going to watch closely. tomorrow, we have got in meeting between the chinese and americans on north korea, something that donald trump says, what did he say in his -- that short message we got? we can take care of it. nothing we can't handle. >> we can handle it. >> we'll see what the united states does on north korea. we're watching that closely. i'll bring you more at 3:00 p.m. eastern this afternoon. but thank you for watching this hour of msnbc live. i'm ali velshi. >> i'm stephanie rule. check us out on social media and if you like it, don't like it, give us feedback, #velshirule.
>> i feel some of you don't need encouragement to do that but thank you nonetheless. time for andrea mitchell on "andrea mitchell reports". >> right now, outrage, anger across america, as american college student otto warmbier dies after being sent back from north korea in a coma. with three americans still illegally detained there, president trump issues a warning to the dictator, he once called a smart cookie. today pointing the finger at the obama administration. >> it is a total disgrace what happened to otto. that should never, ever be allowed to happen. and frankly if he were brought home sooner, i think the result would have been a lot different. he should have been brought home that same day. the result would have been a lot different. tuesday special, voters in georgia's 6th district are heading to the polls in the most expensive congressional race in american